Friday, April 23, 2021

Next Week in [Virtual] Tickets: Films sort of playing Boston 23 April 2021 - 29 April 2021

Yesterday was a pretty good day for news about seeing movies in this area, vaccines are available to anyone who wants it... Things are looking up to the point where I might start moving the theatrical bookings back to the top of this post soon.
  • Not quite yet, though, and in the meantime The Brattle Theatre offers up Bill Traylor: Chasing Ghosts, a documentary about an artist who was born into slavery, worked the same land as a sharecropper, retired to the city and started drawing in his late 80s, homeless. It joins Hope, Małni – Towards the Ocean, Towards the Shore, This Is Not a Burial, It's a Resurrection, Center Stage, The Fever, and Keep an Eye Out in the virtual cinema.

    Grrl Haus Cinema also extends their "Let's Have a Party" program through Sunday evening, which is also how long the Brattle's virtual room will have Monte Hellman's Two-Lane Blacktop available as a tribute, and it's apparently not available to stream anywhere else. It's also when you can order ahead and pick up some snacks.

    Another group of friends, The DocYard, has "A Radical Empathy", a selection of three short documentaries by Esery Mondesir: "Una Sola Sangre", "Pariah, my brother, I follow you, show me the route to the springs", and "What Happens to a Dream Deferred?" The package is available through Thursday, but Mondesir will be doing his Zoom Q&A on Sunday afternoon.
  • The Coolidge Corner Theatre and Goethe-Institut celebrate Earth Day by offering documentary The Hidden Life of Trees through Sunday, with forester Peter Wohlleben collaborating with director Jörg Adolph to adapt his book of the same name. The After Midnite crew, meanwhile, opens "Snapper", a documentary featurette about a locally not-quite-produced film (it was never finished) about a mutant turtle; the presentation includes a pre-recorded chat between director John Campopiano and the Coolidge's Mark Anastasio. It joins Hope, The Room, Eric Rohmer's "The Tales of the Four Seasons", the three Oscar Nominated Shorts programs (Animated, Live-Action, and Documentary, Wojnarowicz, Stray, and City Hall.

    Thursday, the weekly seminar is Punch-Drunk Love, with Bright Wall Dark Room editor Ethan Warren leading the discussion (register and watch the movie ahead of time); They also open documentary In Silico that day, with a live-streamed Q&A with director Noah Hutton, Werner Herzog, and others at 8pm. So watch the movie as soon as you log off from work, I guess.

    And last, but certainly not least, the Coolidge has announced an opening date - 13 May - with classics playing the big room from Thursdays to Sunday while other screens are still open to rent, and first-run films anticipated in June.
  • The ICA will continue the Oscar-Nominated Short Films into May (also available via the Coolidge and Kendall), with the a school vacation program curated by the Boston International kids Film Festival streaming at 12:45pm daily through Sunday.
  • Wicked Queer continues to stream 17 short film packages and feature Wojnarowicz through the 30th, with one more weekend on the schedule after that.

    Belmont World Film obviously hasn't been able to do the usual "Dinner + A Movie" specials for opening and closing night as usual, but they are offering a promotion with Watertown's Molana Restaurant in conjunction with Sun Children, so you can pair Persian food and film, with a post-film chat Monday night. Tuesday, they switch up to France's A Good Man, with Noémie Merlant as a trans man (hmm) who decides to have a child with his partner.
  • IFFBoston has announced their virtual lineup, starting with Summer of Soul on the 6th and finishing with How It Ends on the 16th, with 12 more narrative features, 11 more documentary features, 22 narrative shorts, and 21 documentary shorts in between. It overlaps with The ReelAbilities Film Festival, which will be online from the 6th through 13th, but they're both online; you can mix and match.
  • ArtsEmerson's film program continues to present Shared Story selection Eating Up Easter, paired with short film "Sky Aelans", through Sunday, including a discussion involving Rapu, "Sky Aelans" producer Dan Lin, and others "The Return of the Dragon" is available through Tuesday.
  • The Regent Theatre has already kicked off their "Still Alive at 105" virtual fundraiser, streaming live appearances and highlights from the past twenty years until midnight on Sunday, hoping to raise money for needed upgrades. They also continue to stream Long Live Rock: Celebrate the Chaos.
  • Street Gang: How We Got to Sesame Street is the third documentary about the show and its Muppets in the past few years, but can you really have too many? I say no. This one focuses on the genesis of the show itself, which has been teaching kids letters and numbers, and showcasing a diverse community, for over fifty years. It's at Landmark Theatres Kendall Square.

    They also have Together Together, which stars Ed Helms as a single man in his 40s who decides to become a father, and winds up becoming better friends than expected with his surrogate (Patti Harrison). It also plays West Newton, Boston Common, and Fenway, but the Kendall's shows have an introduction by writer/director Nikole Beckwith and a pre-recorded Q&A with Beckwith, Helms, and Harrison. Note that the Kendall is closed Monday and Tuesday.
  • Apparently it's been a generation since the last time they tried this, so we've got a new Mortal Kombat movie, which is apparently more faithful to the lore which has accrued around a game where two players beat each other up in all that time, with Tadanobu Asano playing Rayden, which is cool, I guess (I'm not really a videogame person). It's at Boston Common (including Imax and Dolby Cinema), Fenway, South Bay (including Imax and Dolby Cinema), Arsenal Yards (including CWX), and Chestnut Hill.

    Demon Slayer the Movie: Mugen Train was apparently a big anime hit in Japan last fall, and arrives here in both subtitled and dubbed versions, playing at Kendall Square, Boston Common (including Dolby Cinema), Fenway, South Bay, and Chestnut Hill.

    Arsenal Yards has 20th anniversary screenings of Shrek on Sunday, Wednesday, and Thursday.

    Hey, see that? Fenway's reopening! In addition to Demon Slayer, Together Together, and Mortal Kombat, they've got Voyagers, The Unholy, Godzilla vs Kong, Nobody, and Tom & Jerry.
  • The West Newton Cinema looks to have most of its screens filled Friday through Sunday, Together Together, the Oscar Shorts, Godzilla vs Kong, The Father, Raya and the Last Dragon, Tom & Jerry (Friday/Saturday matinees only), and Nomadland on the schedule. They're also open for private rentals.
  • The Somerville Theatre and The Capitol are still not showing movies, though the Capitol has their ice cream shop and concession stand open.
  • Theater rentals are available at the Coolidge, the Brattle, Kendall Square, West Newton, the Capitol, The Lexington Venue, and the AMC/Majestic/Showcase multiplexes. The Coolidge has extended the slots available to reserve online through the end of April now offers early and late evening chances to rent Moviehouse II, the screening room, and the GoldScreen, with "Premium Programming" including Wolfwalkers, Promising Young Woman, The Trial of the Chicago 7, The Father, Mank, Judas and the Black Messiah, Nomadland, Minari, In the Mood for Love, and Sound of Metal; the AMC app lists some "sold out" showtimes that are probably just meant to show the movies are available as part of rentals. The independent theaters also have other fund-raising offers worth checking out, and Apple Fresh Pond has plans to re-open in May.
It's all catch-up this weekend, although not as much as I'd like, between what I've heard about how vaccination can knock you for a loop and the online American Crossword Puzzle Tournament. Plus the Oscars on Sunday! I guess I'm treating that as recommendations, rather than something I get really partial about.

(With the exception of Wolfwalkers, which wins Best Animated Feature or we riot!)

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